Centrica plans disposal of 2.7 GW in gas-fired capacity

Citing ongoing poor trading conditions, Centrica’s chief financial officer, Nick Luff, said the company is to sell three of its eight larger gas-fired power plants.

Low margins meant the plants at Langage, Humber and Killingholme were lying idle for much of the year. The company has already mothballed two such unprofitable plants.
Centrica sign
“What matters for the country’s power sector is that there’s enough capacity to meet demand. These big plants will be there, regardless of who owns them,” Mr Luff told a press call, adding that the options include bringing in partners, leasing the plants out or outright sale.

The current book value of the plants is £500m. and any money raised by the sale of its plants might be used for upgrading Centrica’s smaller gas plants to deal with peak demand, he said.

Centrica chief executive Sam Laidlaw  recently warned of potential power blackouts in Britain due to planned closures and underinvestment in new capacity.

The gas-fired plants have a combined capacity of 2.7 GW representing more than half of Centrica’s total generating capacity, which also includes nuclear and wind power.

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